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With writing we may class reading, spelling and compo- sition in a single group of closely related school subjects. They all deal with language, and the aim of all is to develop a reasonable skill in the use of the mother tongue. The psychological process may be roughly divided as follows: (1) An impression upon the retina of the eye followed by the percept of the word or words seen. We be- gin with the meaning, pass through the silent articulation of the word to its imagery, and that stimulates the proper motor centres and the writing follows. It is evident that the two pro- cesses have common ground in the two middle sections, though the direction is reversed.
We may say, then, that writing and reading have common material in the words used. The process, however, which brings home the meaning of words when read, and that which produces written words when meant, are so entirely best essays writing service differ- ent that it is doubtful whether any clear case can be made out for believing that a close relationship between the two can be established. Still, it is true, that writing uses the results of reading, and in so far as that is true, is one reason for a child learning to read before it learns to write.
Our outline of the mental process preceding spontaneous writing brings in another factor. Spelling is of importance only in written language, and, therefore, we must carefully consider spelling in its relationship to writing.
As a matter of fact, from one point of view, spelling is writing and writing is spelling. There is no clear line of de- marcation between the two at all. In any case, spelling forms an inseparable part of the act of.
If the writing habit is to be perfectly automatic, there must be no doubt of the spelling of a word when one is writ- ing. That is, the spelling must be as automatic as the writing movement itself. The automatization of both writing and 96 spelling must go on hand in hand to result in a proper habit of writing. If this be true, it follows that learning to spell lists of words out of context and orally is almost an entire waste of time. The oral spelling is almost useless, for spelling is a matter of writing, not speaking.
Only in so far as the oral repetitions give articulatory, visual or auditory images of the word which in their turn may help to stimulate best essays writing service a correct spelling in writing is it useful at all.
It seems natural that the motor images of hand-movements, as they result from the act of writing, and not of speaking should prove more best essays writing service effica- cious in producing correctly spelled words. That this is true is shown by the following table, which presents the results of an experiment carried out by Lay. Nonsense words were learned by various groups of scholars in different ways. The table shows the number of mistakes per scholar when tested. It is not enough to have pupils able to spell words correctly, they must be able to use them correctly in the expression of their thought. Original composition demands from the child a concentra- tion upon the thought to be expressed and not upon the form of its expression.
Original composition forces the child to leave the , spelling of words to the control of the lower centres, while his i 97 consciousness is busy with the thought.
The child must learn, through practice, to use the word properly in different contexts, and to write it so auto- matically that consciousness does not enter into the process at all.
We may conclude that writing, spelling, and composition are so closely connected with each other that it is foolish to try to separate them.
Every writing lesson after the first few years should be a spelling and composition lesson as well. Only in this way can progress be best made towards the end in view — complete automatization of the writing and spelling habits, so tihat they become efficient tools best essays writing service at the command of thought.
IT is evident from the discussion of the various scales de- scribed in Chapter VUI. Such a scale might be continuous, including all qualities of writing from the worst of the primary grades to the best of high school pupils, or it might be built in sections, so to speak, one for the four junior public school grades, one for the four senior public school grades, and one for the high schools. The accurate ranking of the immature, ill-formed writing of young children with the writing of older pupils is a matter of some difficulty. However poor the writing of the older pupil may be, it shows a certain maturity, e. For this reason it was considered advisable to construct three scales based on the product of the four junior public school grades, 99 the four senior public school grades, and the high schools respectively, rather than one scale, including them all.
Fur- ther, it seemed probable that the number of qualities requisite for such a scale would be large, perhaps twenty, and the scale resulting would be cumbrous. For practical purposes the three scales have a distinct advantage over the one.
Thousands of samples of handwriting were contributed by all sections of Ontario. These samples were divided into three groups, (1) junior public school (2) senior public school (3) high school. From each group 1,000 samples were selected in an effort to secure as wide a range of quality as possible.
The Thorndike method of making the scale was adopted. Each group was ranked into ten grades, with equal distances between each grade.
This grading was done by thirty-two judges for each group. Each judge used his own idea of merit as a basis for his ranking.
After six rankings had been made, the groups were re- duced from 1,000 samples to 600 by taking out those samples which were obviously alike in quality with others.
In this elimination only samples which had fallen within ranks 4, 5, and 6 were removed. This reduction lightened the labour of the task materially, and left just as wide a range in quality as before. After the 32 rankings had been made, those samples were selected whose medians fell exactly upon the scale points 1, 2, 3, — 10.